"I'm going hiking," I answered, with a silent duh.
"Can I come?"
Of course I had no idea where I wanted to go at this point, and since Grenoble is surrounded by mountains, just saying you are going hiking is vague to say the least. We enlisted another Canadian, Kevin, who also appreciates neature, and agreed we would do an overnighter. Then I sat down with my maps and had a good thunk, followed by an epiphany. We could start hiking from the center of Grenoble!
Just take a moment to reflect on how brilliant that is. The center. Of the city. No car, no problem. We would start there, and continue on into the mountains.
So bright and early Saturday morning, we started up the aftermentioned Bastille. It was a hard start, and we could already tell the day was going to be hot. Our efforts, however, were rewarded with a view after about 30 minutes.
|Nikki enjoying the view from the Bastille|
|Kevin checks out the entrance to the caves|
|Kevin found a cave to meditate in, and decided to stay there and become a hermit instead of hiking. (NOT!)|
|Looking back at Grenoble, the Bastille is on the edge of the ridge, looking pitifully small from the height we already had reached.|
|Nikki and Kevin enjoy the shade of the trees on the way down from Mt Rachais.|
|Panorama from Fort St. Eynard|
|Nikki welcomes all the cars to the fort|
|Mt. Chamchaude from just above Sappey-en-Chartreuse|
From the parking lot the trail climbed steeply until, all of a sudden, we were above the trees and could see all the way back to Grenoble and across Vercors.
|This mountain is too big... I guess we'll have to go and eat thistles|
|Cool looking rock|
"What if I fall and die, guys?"
We were climbing pretty steeply, and the trail was loose and gravely. I told her I guessed it would probably hurt if you fell down the hill, but as long as you watched your footing you'd be fine.
Sometimes fears aren't that rational though.
|A flock of crazy ravens above the trees. They were squaking and diving and circling for who knows what.|
|Nikki and the valley floor below.|
|Nikki enjoying a well-earned lunch on top|
|Me on the mountain!|
|Headed down through the forest.|
We hiked down through the forest and out to the town of St. Pierre, where we had time for a stop at the boulangerie before the bus took us back to Grenoble.
In other news, it's 35 degrees and muggy as hell here. Oh, and I also bought a harmonica. And Kevin bought a ukelele. We're starting a band!
|My sweet Blues harp|